Fast Forward/Rewind – March 18, 2022

Our discerning President, Kelsey Long, opened this week’s meeting with the observation that the heart-warming response to the refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine, while appropriate and necessary, stands in stark contrast to the response that refugees from African and Middle Eastern countries have typically received. Kelsey noted that this difference is a reminder of the bias that is rooted in the idea that lives of black and brown people are somehow less worthy than those of their white counterparts; she then led us into our usual minute of silence in acknowledgment and support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Kelsey gave everyone a quick reminder of our new policy of flagging biases during meetings before passing control over to our Toastmaster of the day, Alvin Powell.

Alvin chose affirmation as his word of the day, and used that theme throughout the meeting to encourage support and positivity. We had 15 members and one guest in attendance. After going over meeting roles, Alvin turned the meeting over to the first speaker, Nereida Sutton.

Nereida gave a Level 1 Researching and Presenting project from the Dynamic Leadership pathway titled “Appalachian Trail.” In her talk, Nereida told us of her desire to be one of the 750 or so people each year who hike the almost 2200 mile trail. Nereida shared some interesting facts about the hiking trail that stretches from Georgia to Maine, including the importance of weather conditions, which direction hikers choose to travel, where people find shelter along the route, and what types of wildlife one might encounter. Nereida closed with a description of the sense of beauty and peace she finds when hiking. Her evaluator, Kelsey Long, expressed appreciation for Nereida’s sharing of this hobby she loves with us. Kelsey also noted that Nereida’s talk was very well researched and she did a great job of using visuals that supported her speech without distracting from it.

The second speaker of the day, Tim Murphy, presented a Level 2 talk on Communication Styles from the Presentation Mastery pathway. In his talk titled “Hijacking the Narrative,” Tim explained how he feels it is important to be direct in his communication style, especially when he has done something wrong, using a method from Randy Pausch to openly admit fault and then try to make it right. Using one modern example from college sports, and then leading into a more personal example from his own life, Tim pointed out how some people will use misdirection to hijack the narrative when they have wronged someone in order to avoid being held accountable for their actions. He closed by encouraging each of us to stand up and demand that others take responsibility when they have hurt someone, and to offer the victim “support rather than doubt.” Amelya Black, who served as Tim’s evaluator, said that he did a great job of engaging his audience through his tone, body language and the progression of his topic. She also noted her appreciation for Tim’s call to action at the end of his talk.

Savannah Murphy served as Table Topics Master. Referencing the Georgia Stone Tablets, Savannah asked each member what they would like to put on a stone tablet as advice should our society collapse and humankind have to start over from scratch. Members and guests spoke about the importance of: knowing which plants are edible and poisonous; in-person communication; the division of responsibilities; and remaining as social as possible.

Summer Murphy served as the General Evaluator, and provided a review of the meeting, especially noting the importance of sticking to the agenda so there is enough time for a full Table Topics session at each meeting. Anu Parvathaneni was the Timer this week, and reported on times for the prepared speeches, Table Topics responses and speech evaluations. John Doggett served as Grammarian, and reported on filler words and other grammatical notes.


The Executive Committee has enacted a policy for Sunrise Toastmasters requiring that all guests attending our online club meetings have their video turned “ON.”


The next Sunrise Toastmasters meeting will be at 7 am, March 25 EST on Zoom. 
The roles for that meeting are as follows:

Toastmaster: Anu
Speaker 1: Greg
Speaker 2: Kerstin
Table Topics: Dave
Gen. Evaluator: Amelya
Speaker 1 Evaluator: John
Speaker 2 Evaluator: Tim
Timer: Tanuja
Grammarian: Angela

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